CCUNESCO Annual General Meeting Report 

170 members, partners, key stakeholders participated to the 55th Canadian Commission for UNESCO Annual General Meeting (Ottawa June 4-6, 2015)

Nurturing Culture(s) to Bridge Divides:

In support of UNESCO’s 70th Anniversary and in the context of the International Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures (2013-2022), the purpose of the 2015 AGM was to stimulate member/partner engagement and to create a shared understanding of the constructive role Culture(s) plays in bridging divides.

  
Members stated:

In the context of bridging divides through culture:

Members stressed the need to go from “to” and “for” to “with”. Participants also talked about the need for an authentic understanding of each other’s values, and in a sustainable development perspective, the need to be better ancestors.

Values that must guide our work:

Openness was the most cited value, but empathy, humility, respect, responsibility, reciprocity and connection were also recurring themes. It is an individual responsibility to teach those values but society has a role to play in nurturing this, i.e. through the education system. CCUNESCO should be leading the way in implementing these values.

Priority areas in which we must invest our efforts in the short term:

Common threads or themes included lifelong learning (with a focus on people who are out of school), education-formal and informal, strategic plans, empowering others, community engagement, dissemination of information, exposure to various ways of living, cross-cultural communication, informal exchanges, and understanding the interpretations of nature and how we can adapt.

Practices that we should implement:

Participants insisted on the importance of education, formal and informal, at school and outside school. They also express the need to breaking the silos and having a broader perspective, beyond exchanges between university professors. Exchanges can be very simple and small: at all levels, within the school system, within communities, remembering to include newcomers.


The mural was a great visual backdrop to the AGM and a springboard for meaningful conversations.

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CCUNESCO's team would like to thank all participants for making this AGM a memorable one!